I totally hate getting receipts, especially grocery store receipts. I don’t ever know what to do with them so I usually pitch them. But I recently realized that receipts would be perfect for speech therapy with older students and adults.
Life Skills in Speech Therapy
Why are receipts perfect to teach life skills? Receipts help people use functional language skills. Students can apply their knowledge directly to their lives. Receipts that can be used in speech therapy include:
- Grocery store receipts
- Clothing purchases
- Online shopping package slips
- Office supply receipts
- Restaurant receipts
- Coffee shop receipts
- Library check out receipts
Grocery receipts can spark discussions about food groups, recipes, favorite foods, grocery shopping, and favorite grocery stores. Depending on the clients, the discussion can be extended to budgeting and money vocabulary.
Save your back-to school clothing shopping receipts and office supply receipts and use them to discuss what clothing and school supplies you need to buy for school.
Restaurant receipts show more than what you ate: it shows dishes that you ordered and kids can learn what ingredients go into recipes, what you might order for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Online shopping package slips show household supplies that families might order online. Also many kids might not know what people order at coffee shops (and that people order more than just coffee).
What’s Life Skills Even Mean?
Life skills are all about learning the skills needed to navigate in your community. Students can be empowered to be independent in their own lives when they have the knowledge. Many students with communication disorders and those that are in special education need direct instruction of things that other students seem to absorb in their lives. However, I’m of the opinion that life skills are good for all students. Many typically developing students need to have these skills taught to them at school, because they aren’t learning them at home.
Life Skills Program
Using community resources to start a life skills programs is a great way to get students out and about. Here are some places where you can take your students to to reinforce their learning. Alternatively, you can grab receipts from these places and bring them into the speech room to teach students:
- Post Office
- Office Supply Store
- Clothing Store
- Department Store
- Grocery Store
- Gas Station
- Coffee Shop
Lastly, I’ve got to plug libraries. They are some of my favorite places! Many students don’t know that libraries have more than just books (CDs, DVDs, and video games too) and also classes for kids and adults too. Reviewing what people check out at the library can spark a conversation about what happens at the library, getting a library card, and why reading is important.
I like trying new things in therapy and I hope I’ve inspired you to try receipts in speech therapy.
Sam Wilkins says
I never thought about using a receipt to help guide a conversation. My son is six and is having some problems learning his vocabulary. Maybe we should try going through receipts with him and see if it will help him.